Hutchinson consoles daycare bill supporters, praises Rauner
State Sen. Toi Hutchinson (D-Dist. 40) consoled SB570 supporters after the bill recently failed to pass the Illinois House of Representatives by a single vote.
The bill would have expanded access to daycare by fully restoring cuts made to the Department of Human Services' Child Care Assistance Program.
On the eve of the bill's legislative collapse, Gov. Bruce Rauner agreed to scale back some of the cuts his administration had put in place, raising the income eligibility ceiling for child care assistance to 162 percent above the federal poverty level. The new compromise limit is only 13 percent shy of the original ceiling and more than three times Rauner's original mark of 50 percent.
"I know that some are disappointed in the failure of SB570, but I am grateful that the governor did what he promised me he would and allowed 31,000 additional children per month to access childcare," Hutchinson said. "This is what we have been fighting for. We aren't 100 percent there yet, but I don't want anyone to be discouraged. Your calls, your presence, your dedication, your advocacy worked."
Hutchinson also encouraged the public to continue being active in their government.
"Never give up on the power of using your voice to affect change and always remember that you have a right to call on your government to listen," Hutchinson said. "The road so far has been hard, but we are going to get through this if we stay the course. As always, our children, as well as all of those we hold dear, deserve the very best we have to give. I promise I won't stop fighting."
The bill was first introduced Jan. 28 and was advanced by the Senate in August before failing to pass the House on Nov. 10.